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bilbl_superSince I don’t have many more days of summer vacation left (less than 2 weeks before I begin my teacher meetings), I was reflecting on how I’ve spent this summer.  I’ve had the best time working out and moving my body.  I have completely loved the routine of getting my workouts in first thing in the morning (most of the time) and working out with Tinkerbell several mornings a week.  Not only that, but I’ve made fitness a way for me to connect with other friends, as well.  Fun and fitness just go together for me.  The Tone It Up girls said to make this week count, and I definitely plan to with my workouts and the way I spend the rest of my days, as well. Here’s this week’s plan:

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Monday: Excited for Spring cardio (home elliptical) + TIU: Bikini Body Routine
Tuesday: kickboxing & afternoon bike ride + TIU : Best Ab Routine (x2)
Wednesday: spinning + TIU: Thailand Tush & Daisy Duke workout 
Thursday: run/walk intervals or elliptical  + TIU: Sunset Stretch (Beach Babe 2 DVD)
Friday: Stairs at Communications Hill & swimming + TIU: Beach Ball Workout
Saturday: run/walk intervals or elliptical

And don’t forget that I’ve started a little challenge of my own – getting in 150 miles by the time I have to go back to school for my first teacher workday on August 15. I’d love for you to join me.

I post my daily workouts on Instagram, so follow me (or look at the sidebar of this blog) to see what I’m doing!

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bilbl_superThis week I’m really looking forward to getting in solid workouts that combine cardio and TIU toning.

Here’s this week’s plan:

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Monday: Stairs at Communications Hill
Tuesday: incline treadmill + bike
Wednesday: spinning + TIU:  Best Inner & Outer Thigh Routine
Thursday: Making Waves Cardio (home elliptical)
Friday: long walk on the beach with Sofi + TIU: TLC (Tone, Lift, Cinch) Workout
Saturday: home elliptical + TIU: Beach Yoga

And don’t forget that I’ve started a little challenge of my own – getting in 150 miles by the time I have to go back to school for my first teacher workday on August 15. I’d love for you to join me.

I post my daily workouts on Instagram, so follow me (or look at the sidebar of this blog) to see what I’m doing!

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bilbl_shoppingFriday Five

1.  I took today off to get myself organized around the house.  I’ve had busy weekends for the past month, and I feel like my house is in need of a deep cleaning.  For example, the other day I had to use a beach towel because I was in desperate need of doing laundry. Plus, as part of my Lenten Sacrifice, I need to spend some more time going through my closet and compiling clothes to donate.

2.  Speaking of clothes, I’ve been having a great time buying some clothes for Hawaii.  I wanted to buy a few sundresses, and found some great ones:

caprihalter hilowdress roseleopard They’re all really light and will be perfect for Hawaii’s temps.  The maxi dress will definitely be too long for me, but I found a great tailor who hems dresses for really cheap, and since the dress itself was on clearance at $17, paying for the tailoring is worth it.  I’m a bit worried that the hi-low dress might be a bit too short in front, but hopefully it will hit me lower because I’m short.

Remember those bikini tops I bought from VS?  Well they arrived the other day, and they were a bit too small. (I am very happy to say that the bottoms I bought fit well). They fit, but they were cut really sexily, and I just didn’t think I’d feel very comfortable wearing them, and would be worried that I’d “pop out.” So I returned those and got these “perfect coverage” tops instead:

black polkadots stripes&aqua I think I’ll feel a lot more secure in these.  That third one was on sale at Kohl’s and I like that it has a tiny bit of aqua detail.  Plenty of tops for the beach for a week. I also finally bought the board shorts that I’d planned on:

boardshorts  I haven’t received these yet,but I’m really hopeful that they’ll be long enough and fit well. A few comments on the site that I bought them from said that they wore them out and about on vacation, as well as on the beach, which I think is a great idea.  I don’t have any pants suitable for Hawaii (I think jeans will be too heavy), so I also bought a few pairs of capris:

vsfleececrop tekgearcapris skimmerpants The first ones are fleece crops from Victoria’s Secret, and because I really liked the fit of the boyfriend pants I bought from VS before, I thought I’d  give these a try.  The second are from Kohl’s and were only $15; they seem like good lounge pants.  And the last ones are also from Kohl’s – I really hope they fit well because I think they’re really cute.  The only things left to buy for the trip (and for my spring/summer wardrobe) are some tanks and a few tops.

3. I started this morning off with a great spin class!  I’d bought some new padded bicycle capri pants that worked really well; I didn’t feel any of that pelvic bone pain that I’d had the first time.  I definitely need to fit more spin classes into my normal routine, because I love how powerful I feel when I’m in the class, and I really like the huge calorie burn that comes with the 60 minute session.

4. 20140314-145221.jpg I thought I’d share a lunch that I’ve been loving.  I first saw it on Pinterest, and I’ve seen it a lot on Instagram, too.  It’s a twist on egg salad – instead of using mayonnaise I substitute guacamole.  It might look a little strange and green, but it’s really delicious and adds a nice kick. Today because I’d burned so many calories with spin class, my TIU workouts, and taking Sofi for a walk in the neighborhood, I put the egg salad on two slices of Dave’s Good Seed Thin-Sliced Bread.  But this egg salad is also great on spinach to keep it more low carb.  I know it seems odd, but just give it a try.

5. This weekend I have some fun plans! Tomorrow afternoon I’m heading to SF to meet up with VSGTanya, whose videos on YouTube and posts on FB have really helped me learn so much about this journey.  Plus, she’s just a cool lady! She lives near New Orleans, but will be here in my area for work, so I couldn’t pass up the chance to meet her while she’s here. I can’t wait to meet her after following her story on YT and FB for over a year and a half.  There will be quite a few other WLS -ers there, so it will be fun to meet new people.  Then on Sunday my friend Di and I are volunteering for 3 hours doing a cleanup day at a local lake county park.

2013-09-27 12.14.29Happy Friday! I hope you have a wonderful weekend, full of fun and exciting adventures.

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bilbl_superThis morning I woke up in just enough time to head to the spin class I’d been planning to attend for more than a week.  Actually, today’s spin class has been years in the making.  I’ve wanted to try spinning forever, but was extremely intimidated by the proximity of the bikes to each other.  When I was over 300 pounds, I was worried that I’d spill over into my neighbor’s personal space.  Not a great feeling.

There was the time, back in August 2011, when I went into the empty spin room and spent 5 minutes on the bike.  I know I didn’t even get “out of the saddle”/stand up on the bike, because I had no idea what I was doing.   I also didn’t change the tension at all.  I do remember that I felt the pain in the pubic bone that comes with spinning.

So I prepared for that pain by buying some padded spin pants that had a skirt overlay.  I’d first seen them on Emmie’s blog, and because I was convinced I was eventually going to try spinning, I decided the investment was worth it.  I remember in August 2011 that I was embarrassed to wear them in public because of how tight they were.  The skirt was almost indecent because my big booty was causing it to ride way up in the back, barely covering. Here’s the post from December 2011 where the pants showed up again.  This time, I actually missed the spin class because I was fooling around with the fit of the pants, trying to camouflage how tight they were on me.

I haven’t tried spinning in all this time, but today was the day.  My gym offers lots of spin classes Monday-Thursday: at 5:45am, 9am, and 6pm.  I figured the 5:45am class would be packed, as would the 6pm, and since I was off, 9am seemed like the ticket.  Because I’d heard all the horror stories about how much the spin seat hurts the pubic bone, I decided to wear the padded, skirted pants even though they were way too big.  Like at least 3 sizes too large! Let’s compare the fit, shall we?

Left - 12/2011 Right - today, 2/2014

Left – 12/2011  Right – today, 2/2014
The difference in these two photos is really striking, especially because I’m sucking in my stomach in both shots. Dramatic difference!!

I don't know if you can tell, but the skirt was way, way longer today.  Less of a booty keeping it up!

I don’t know if you can tell, but the skirt was way, way longer today. Less of a booty keeping it up!

And here’s a front view picture, just for good measure.

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So many of my workout clothes are just way, way too big. This top is supposed to be one of those snug, dry-weave tanks, but you can see that it’s super loose on me. I’ve gotta hit an activewear sale soon.

Anyway, back to the class.  I got there about 10 minutes early, just to make sure that I had time to chat with the teacher and make sure I had the bike all set up.  I found out that the seat should be set so that it’s in the middle of my hip when I’m standing up next to it.  I also made sure that when I sat on the bike my legs were still slightly bent, not completely straight.  The teacher showed me how to change the tension, and told me that I could stay a “half step behind” if I wanted to; meaning I could take it a bit easier than the rest of the class since it was my first time.  You guys know that there was no way I was going to take it easy, right?!

The class itself was so great!  The teacher started off the class with Pharrell’s “Happy,” which couldn’t have been more perfect! In fact, take 4 minutes right now and listen to it.  It’s guaranteed to make you feel fantastic!

The teacher immediately turned off the lights in the room.  I’m not really sure why – maybe so that we wouldn’t focus on how we looked in that room which was surrounded by mirrors?  At one point during the class, I caught a glimpse of a girl in the mirror across the room and my first thought was how good she looked on the bike, how confident she seemed as she pedaled.  Only, she didn’t look like any of the women in the class.  I went one by one trying to figure out which one she was, until I realized – SHE WAS ME!  I can’t tell you how amazing that felt.  That I thought that I looked great during an exercise class is a new first.  That and the fact that I wasn’t the biggest girl in the room.  And I wasn’t worried at all about being too big for the bike – there was plenty of room on either side of me today.  NSVs abounded!

I felt empowered by how strong my legs were, and how well I kept up, even when we were “climbing.”  Climbing is when you slowly increase the tension in the bike higher and higher to mimic climbing a hill or mountain.  Sometimes these climbs were done “in saddle” (sitting down) and other times the climbs were done while standing the entire time. She also had us go on “mixed climbs” where we alternated between sitting and standing as we increased the tension.  I really enjoyed how the teacher used the music to help us get through the tough parts of the workout, and I can see that a really great playlist can make all the difference.

To be honest, the worst part of the entire class was when we were “in saddle” because my pubic bone just killed me.  I kept squirming and moving around as I sat there, trying to get in any position that would relieve a little of the pain.  I can’t imagine what it would’ve felt like without the padding in my pants!  I’m still slightly sore right now, 8 hours later, as I write this.  Everyone says the pain goes away and you get used to it the more you do it.  Still, I’m going to have to dig out that bike seat cover that I’d bought a few years ago, because I will take any extra padding I can get.  Even with the pain, I absolutely loved the spin class!

This is the photo I posted on Instagram this morning.  See how big that smile is in both of those photos?  That’s because I felt so accomplished, so proud.  I finally did something that I’d been wanting to do forever.  And not only did I do it, but I loved it.  I was good at it.  My strong legs took me through the entire class, and while I was “glowing” within 10 minutes, I felt beautiful.

2014-02-18 10.04.51Today’s Adventure in Fitness was amazing! So much so that I’m going to start going to spin classes at least once a week. And I’m going to treat myself to a session at Soul Cycle sometime soon, to check another thing off my Fitness Bucket List.

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Oh, today has been full of irony…but wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.

You see, this morning, I was all set to go to a 9am spin class. As I woke up, I started trying to make excuses about why today wasn’t a good day to take the class. But I pushed those fat girl thoughts out of my head and told myself that if I’m really trying to reach my goals, there’s no room for excuses. So I got up, got ready, and even tweeted about it.

Then it was time to figure out what I was going to wear to the class. Because I’d purchased those padded spinning pants, but I knew they didn’t look good on me. But I knew I’d be sorry if I didn’t use that padding. So I decided to try them on and hope against hope that they looked ok on me.

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Nope, they still look bad from the back. I hate that fold at the bottom of the skirt. And the skirt BAREly covers my ass.

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It's not a good look from the front, either.

That darn skirt just didn’t fit me yet.  So I had the thought of avoiding the skirt altogether – at first I thought about cutting it off, but thought that I could just tuck it into the pants.  And since the pants are pretty see-thru because of the coolmax fabric, I decided to add a second pair of leggings on top of them. That way, I’d have the padding, but I’d be a bit more modest with the 2nd pair of leggings.  I’m so uncomfortable  showing that much of my thighs – I love/hate how tight the leggings are.  I love that they feel like I’m not wearing anything and they make working out easier, but I hate how my thighs look in them.  No where to hide, if you know what I mean.

I figured that if I paired the leggings with one of the long yoga tops that I have, that would work to semi-camouflage the thighs. But as you can see from the photos above, it really looked no better than the skirt did.  Plus, the tank top showed quite a bit of “flub” around my back and arms. And really, how was that an improvement?

So I decided to just pair the leggings with the tshirt I’d originally planned on wearing.  I love Animal, don’t you?

Not great, but at least my back flub was covered.

20111227-114859.jpg

A bit better from the back?

20111227-114911.jpg

When in doubt, cover it all up with a hoodie!

After all of that messing around about the wardrobe, I had wasted at least 30 minutes, so I quickly set Sofi into her puppy area, grabbed some water, and decided to bring some headphones, too, just in case I couldn’t make it through the whole class and needed to finish my workout elsewhere.

I left about 15 minutes before the class started, and by the time I got to the gym and entered in my pin info at the front desk, it was 8:56.  I went straight to the spin room, all the while wondering just how awful I looked in this getup, not to mention the fact that I felt like I was walking strange because of the padded leggings.  Definitely not something that inspires confidence.  Anyway, as I walked into the room, the spin instructor was just asking people if there was anyone new to the class.  I raised my hand, while I weaved through the room, looking for a free bike.  I asked a couple of people if the one next to them was taken, because they had towels or water bottles on them, and sure enough, they were taken.  Dammit!  No free bikes to be had.

See, this is where the irony comes in – if I hadn’t been so worried about what to wear to the class, I might have actually been there in enough time to actually take the class.  Ugh.  Well, lesson learned.  Lots of people still take a spin class offered at 9am on a weekday, especially one that’s in the week between Christmas and NYE when lots of people are off of work. Spinning just wasn’t in the cards today, I guess.

But I still wanted to get a workout in, so I went on the recumbent stationary bike…

20111227-114916.jpg

…and I burned some serious calories!  I don’t go by the calorie count on the screen, because I didn’t enter in my weight or any other stats, but I do like the pace I was going at.  MyFitnessPal said that I burned 508 calories, which is great!  I was definitely sweating and my heart rate was pumping as I was on the bike.  I am SO glad that I thought to grab my headphones.  I’m also really glad that I had just uploaded some new mixes from RockMyRun.

20111227-114921.jpg

I'm proud of my speed.

After all of that worry, I still haven’t taken a spin class!  But I’m going to the one at 9am on Thursday.  Definitely. And I’m going to get there at 8:30, just to be safe.  Since I already know what I’m wearing, it shouldn’t be a problem.

Speaking of workout wardrobes, have you entered the AdoraOm New Year, New Look, New You Makeover Contest yet?  There are only 5 days left!

When all is said and done, I didn’t get to the class I had hoped for, but I still worked out and got in a good calorie burn.  I feel great about that. Plus, I have so much energy.  I can’t wait to tackle the rest of the day.

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For the month of December, I’ll be participating in #WEverb11. Each day gives a new prompt, each of which is a chance to reflect and look forward.

December 22: Accomplish

What is one thing you want to do before you bid adieu to 2011? How will you make it happen? Contributed by Bella (hey, that’s ME, again!!).

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Leave it to me to write a goal-oriented question, right?  Hey, I know who I am and what makes me happy.  I like making a goal for myself and then accomplishing it.  Who doesn’t?

So, since there is just about a week and a half left in 2011, I think the one thing I’d like to accomplish that I haven’t already is to take a spin class.  Remember earlier this year when I made a big thing about buying the padded spin pants and then not really fitting them? And then remember how I made it my summer goal and then didn’t accomplish it?  Well I think it’s high time that I got on that darn bike, took a spin class and found out if all this trepidation was really worth it.

It looks like there’s a class next Tuesday, the 27th, at 9am, right before the yoga class I was planning on going to.  So, that’s going to be the one.  I figure that I can try out the spinning class and then get any kinks out in the yoga class.  And if there is as much pain the next day as they say, at least I’ll be home and not at work.  Taking spinning wasn’t on my Winter Break Workout Plan, but I’ve been going off plan a bit anyway, so I might as well do a bit more deviating, right? Plus, I really don’t want to leave such a big thing undone in 2011.

No matter how the spin class goes, I know that I’ll feel proud of myself as I get off the bike and walk out of the room.  (Look for a full report sometime Tuesday afternoon).

What do you want to accomplish before we see the end of 2011?

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If you’d like to join in on the daily writing prompts, go to WEverb11, sign up for the email notifications, and join us! Or follow along on Twitter using the #WEverb11 hashtag!

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I was so excited to see that the padded spinning skorts I had ordered arrived this afternoon! I immediately tried them on, only to find they were way too tight in my stomach and butt. Way. Too. Tight. Like, can’t hide it with a long top, too tight. Ugh. See for yourself: (it’s so bad that I purposely didn’t show my face in the photos because I’m ashamed :()

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You can’t see it clearly because of the light in my room, but in back the skirt b-a-r-e-l-y covers my ass and then it sort of does this weird jutting out thing.  So even if I had a long shirt on, it would look strange.  Sigh.

So these are going on the shelf until I can lose about 10-15 pounds.  It’s sad because they were super expensive, and I was really looking forward to wearing (and more importantly, using!) them.  I even got the largest size, “just in case.”  On the positive side, I will say is that they were really comfortable because the legs are made from the same sort of material that football players’ jerseys are – you know the kind with the holes in the material?  Not quite mesh, but very breathable.  And while the padding felt sort of weird, it was thick and I’m sure that would be great on the spin bike.  I can’t wait ’till these fit.

I was so dejected at first, thinking, “now I can’t do spin class before summer ends because it’s going to hurt too much.”  I really wanted to try out spinning, because I have such strong legs, and I know I would love the class, although I also know at first it’s going to be a huge challenge for me.  In the past I would’ve used the skorts not fitting as an excuse to say, “oh well, it’s a sign, no spinning for me until I lose weight.”  But that’s not who I am anymore.  I’m the girl that doesn’t let things like this get in the way of her trying a new exercise. 

And then it hit me – why not buy a padded seat cover in the mean time?  Amazon.com to the rescue!!!

I really like how it has the “relief” because that is the main point of pain on the spin bike.  The reviews for this one were good, and many people mentioned that they use if for spinning, so I think it will serve my purposes.  Plus, it’s only $19.99, so it’s not a huge investment. I just hope I can get it on the seat and it stays put during the class.

My plan is to try it out at a 9am class, which I’m hoping will be less crowded than an evening class.  Once I get the hang of it, I’m sure I’m going to love spinning so much that I’ll become a regular and then those damn padded skorts will fit me in no time!

The padded seat cover will be here on Monday (I hope!), or Tuesday at the latest, so by next Thursday, I’ll be able to take a spin class!!

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